House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) finally said something conservatives could agree with on Thursday.
Pelosi note the House can’t make members of Congress receive a COVID-19 vaccination nor can she determine who is vaccinated due to privacy laws.
“We cannot require someone to be vaccinated. That is just not what we can do,” Pelosi said. “It is a matter of privacy to know who is or who isn’t.”
Pelosi added, “I can’t go to the Capitol physician and say give me names of people who aren’t vaccinated so I can go encourage them or make it known to others to encourage them to be vaccinated.”
About 75 Percent of House Members Vaccinated
“It may be in the last few days some more, but I think it’s about 75 percent. But again, the physician cannot tell us, Democrats, Republicans or who — and that’s right,” Pelosi added regarding how many House members have been vaccinated. “We should be respecting people’s privacy.”
Instead, the house speaker referred to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) latest guidelines for social distancing and mask wearing.
During Biden’s recent speech to a joint session of Congress, just 200 people attended in person. Attendees were required to wear a mask, even if they had been fully vaccinated.
Returning to Business as Usual
Pelosi’s estimated figure of House members who have been vaccinated matches reports elsewhere.
According to an NBC News report in March, “About one in four members of the House has not been vaccinated against Covid-19 as of early March, despite having had access to the vaccine since December, according to a letter from House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy.”
McCarthy also argued the rate of vaccinated House members was high enough to return to business as usual. The House has continued to operate.
In the Senate, at least three members have not yet been vaccinated, according to Forbes. Sens. Rand Paul (R-KY), Mike Braun (R-IN) and Ron Johnson (R-WI) have publicly noted reasons for waiting to be vaccinated.